[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]At Edwards Lifesciences, we believe that through our actions we will become trusted partners with customers, colleagues, and patients – creating a community unified in its mission to improve the quality of life around the world.
To help facilitate the event we were pleased to welcome both our Federal Member of Parliament, John Alexander OAM, MP and NSW Parliamentary Secretary for Health, the Hon Natasha Maclaren-Jones MLC.
Since its inception, the Foundation has gifted more than $87 million to non-profit organizations across the globe. The focus is on supporting underserved heart valve and critically ill patients, as well as strengthening the communities in which Edwards employees live and work.
This year the Foundation awarded over $14 million to charities in over 40 countries. Originally estimated to reach 1 million underserved people by 2020, the Every Heartbeat Matters community exceeded the goal early, and, in September 2018, raised it to 1.5 million people.
First time recipient of funding from the Foundation, Red Dust, an Indigenous organization that believes good health is the key to a bright future and that health outcomes can only be made possible through a two-way exchange with communities.
CEO of Red Dust, Scott Stirling said:
“We thank and welcome the Edwards Foundation for our work to enrich lives, improve health and strengthen the future of Indigenous youth and families. The funding will allow us to work in partnership with Edwards and with remote communities to improve health knowledges through our Healthy Living Program, especially around rheumatic heart disease.”
HeartKids, the only charity funding vital research and providing family support to the eight babies born every day with Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) was the recipient of almost $11,000 from the Every Heartbeat Matter grant. Currently, over half of all beds in paediatric intensive care are filled with these babies and CHD is the biggest killer of babies in Australia, sadly four lives are lost every week.
Director of HeartKids, Jayne Blake said:
“The Edwards Lifesciences Foundation have been enormously generous supporters of HeartKids for many years, in the form of donations, grants and support of HeartKids campaigns and events.
“This grant will be used towards the national CHD Registry that is being developed, to generate the knowledge needed to better understand the true burden of the disease.”
Member for Bennelong, John Alexander OAM, MP said:
“We’re very lucky in Bennelong to have companies like Edwards Lifesciences who are so keen to make generous contributions to the community. The organisations we saw last week represent some of the best causes in Australia, and it is wonderful to see them supported in this way.”
Managing Director of Edwards Lifesciences ANZ, Pat Williams said:
“Our commitment to charitable giving and participation in philanthropic causes is one of the defining elements of our culture. We feel fortunate to be able to support many health- and community-focused programs through grants to non-profit organizations from the Edwards Lifesciences Foundation. Locally we’re proud that 97% of our employees undertook volunteering activities in our communities this year with an aspiration of 100% participation each year.”
Highlights from the charities include:
- National Heart Foundation of Australia – the funds will go toward rolling out its new online screening capacity to help improve patient pathways to treatment.
- Pancare Foundation – expand its Patient Support Days to patients and their carers who are newly diagnosed, going through treatment or just post treatment so they are receiving the very best care and information at the early stage of their diagnosis.
- Ronald McDonald House, Western Sydney – open 365 days of the year it allows families to remain connected, and parents/carers can better communicate with their child’s medical specialists. Families form relationships with other parents going through similar experiences with staff and volunteers providing invaluable personal support throughout their stay.
- The Exodus Foundation – the funds will help towards preparing up to 800 healthy and nutritious meals for Sydney’s homeless and marginalised every day of the year and this will increase to 2000 on Christmas Day.
- Wairoa School – to replace the current person hoist in the school’s hydrotherapy pool area to enable students and community members who have physical disabilities to enter the pool in a safe and dignified manner.
- Youth Off The Streets – the funds will go towards the National Scholarship Program to provide financial and practical support to one of 22 disadvantaged students lacking support networks and resources to fulfill their potential.
- Auckland City Mission – the funds will go towards the Calder Health Centre to bring health care services to some of the most marginalised Aucklanders, many of whom have extremely high and complex health needs.
- Friends of Fiji Heart Foundation – carries out its annual mission with a team of approximately 70 to 90 medical professional who volunteers their time from New Zealand and abroad to provide free open-heart surgery to poor and needy individuals of Fiji.
- Open Heart International – As a result of a 25-year investment, there are now PNG surgeons and anaesthetists who are able to provide some independent cardiac surgery. The funds will go towards helping with a new 5-year phase to expand the scope of capacity to include congenital, coronary grafting, and valve replacement surgery, as well as interventional cardiology.
- Red Dust – the funds will go towards promoting rheumatic heart disease awareness and screening in 5 remote communities over 1 year. The community-as-family model of programming engages Aboriginal youth and families and is developed and delivered in partnership with local elders and community organisations, ensuring cultural authenticity, complementarity with existing services and opportunities for local training and employment.